Official 19 Task 3

Social Learning

One way people learn is by watching the behavior of others. Sometimes called social learning, this type of learning involves the process of learning to copy---or not copy---the action of another. By observing the results, or consequences, of another’s behavior, people tend to imitate the behavior of another when they see that it leads to a desirable consequence---hoping to repeat it for themselves. Of course, the opposite is also true---people tend to avoid imitating the behavior of another when they see it result in an undesirable consequence.

Narrator: Now listen to part of a lecture in a Psychology class.
Professor: Okay, so an example to illustrate this.
You often see this happen in families.
Let's say there are these two kids, a sister and a brother.
Let's say the girl is six and the boy is four.
And one day, they're all out shopping with their mother and they're in the store,
and the girl sees a toy she wants.
She asks her mother to buy it... to buy the toy for her.
But the mother says no.
So what does the little girl do?
She starts crying and screaming, You know, Mommy, I want it.
And finally, Mom gives in and says,
OK, fine, you can have it and buys the girl the toy.
Now, don't forget, the little brother's there,
and he's watching all of this happen.
And maybe he sees this sort of thing happen a lot and his mother giving in when his sister cries and screams.
What do you think he's going to start doing when he wants something from mom?
He'll probably cry and scream, right?
But what if the opposite had happened?
The same mom didn't give in and didn't buy the girl the toy.
In fact, same mom instead, disciplined the girl for screaming and crying.
When they got home,
she didn't let the little girl watch her favorite TV program.
Again, the little boy is watching.
Now what's the little boy likely to do if he finds himself in a similar situation,
and he wants mom to buy him something.
Chances are, he's not gonna cry and scream, right?
Use the examples from the lecture to explain the concept of social learning.